The University of Rhode Island has removed a partial Malcolm X quote from the facade of its main library 30 years after members of the school’s Black Student Leadership Group and others protested because they said the shortened quote misrepresented the fuller meaning of the civil rights leader’s message.
The inscription on the Robert L. Carothers Library and Learning Commons was installed in 1992 and was meant to be a tribute, but instead, led to the takeover of a campus building, the university said in a statement Friday.
The inscription read, “My alma mater was books, a good library … I could spend the rest of my life reading, just satisfying my curiosity.”
The full quote, from “The Autobiography of Malcolm X,” reads: “I told the Englishman that my alma mater was books, a good library. Every time I catch a plane, I have with me a book that I want to read — and that’s a lot of books these days. If I weren’t out here every day battling the white man, I could spend the rest of my life reading, just satisfying my curiosity — because you can hardly mention anything I’m not curious about.”